President-Elect Obama's strident effort to open his administration to everyone, regardless of their views, is once again being criticized. Although intellectually I see the wisdom of his openness, my emotions often rebel in horror. This is one of those times.
Just as I was offended when Ronald Reagan chose to announce his run for the presidency in Philadelphia, Mississippi, best-known for the lynching of three civil rights workers--James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, and Michael Schwerner--I am offended that Obama has invited Rick Warren to do the invocation at his inauguration. Reagan's selection of that particular site was an intentional slap in the face of the Civil Rights Movement. Obama's selection of Warren feels like an intentional slap in the face of lesbians and gays, particularly so soon after Warren helped lead the fight to abolish their right to marry.
As laudable as Obama's penchant for inclusion is, there are some occasions when it is just not appropriate. This is one of them.